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Elevate

Exhibition: December 3 to 24
Virtual Artist-Guided Tour on Facebook Live: December 2 at 5 pm
Art Hive with Nikki Middlemiss (in-person): December 18, 10:30 am to 1 pm

Nikki Middlemiss’s drawings are typically built up by layering lines. In the Elevate series presented at the McClure Gallery, however, the line is masked out on the tracing paper support. Paint is then applied, and the paper is irrevocably creased and shrunk as it dries. These works are constructed through considerations of reduction rather than of accumulation, where the line is simply what is left. It functions as a negative or a void. These negated lines are however fluid and insistent, and they speak to reach and expansion.

Elevate demonstrates how the transformative powers of material processes are at the heart of Nikki Middlemiss’s practice. She is interested in phases of deterioration and renewal, often beginning a drawing with a geometric structure such as a grid or a spiral that is subsequently worked on until it becomes something other, or more, than what it was when she started. Here Middlemiss tests the physical limits of a fragile paper through a rigorous and abrasive treatment. And yet a sense of calm and weightlessness prevails in the finished works.

Nikki Middlemiss received a Bachelor’s degree in Visual Arts from the University of Ottawa in 1999. Her art has since been exhibited in galleries and artist-run centres across Canada, including in Montreal at the Centre des arts actuels Skol, Galerie B-312 and the Maisons de la culture network. Nikki has lived in Montreal since 2000.

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